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About Jackstarr

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    Trenchcoat Brigade

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  1. Well, it's still pronounced "Constanteen"...
  2. must...resist...prevent...burning...and requesting...free...copies of JLD...from Ade...for sake...of....constantine...completionism.... One of the things I initially liked about Hellblazer was the grounding in reality (social, political, real-time aging, downtime) and the continuity arising from such a reality. This becoming more irrelevant to the title, and the continuity has been buggered up in so many ways over the years. Note I said "irrelevant to" rather than "ignored by", as there's now a tendency to use the use the title's history as a playbox to bring back characters and situations just for the sake of it. I was reading an interview with the creator of Breaking Bad where he talked about the way the writing team approached the series, and how this differs from many other shows - by always starting with character, and letting situations happen as a result of character actions - and to make sure that character is always the main focus of the writing. On the downside, it means they don't always have a tight plotline to focus to, but on the upside, it takes them places they don't always expect, and they have Emmies and WGA awards to back up their approach. Anyway, I'm rambling again...it's not even as though Milligan's plots are that tight in the first place so maybe he does take this approach after all! I just wish I could believe a lot of his character motivations. Maybe we should just switch to a Legends of the Dark Knight style series about Constantine - let creators go wild with continuity-based or apocryphal tales about Constantine and don't worry about the day-to-day title. That way we can get a fix of the con-job Constantine, the mopey Constantine, the social constantine (both in terms of having a social conscience as well as spending time with mates), etc. Some stories can be standalone, others can be multiple parts, but there would always be something new around the corner if you start to get bored with that creator's approach. I'd even like to see an anthology a la Batman Black and White.
  3. Heh, maybe I should! But each time I've not bothered buying regularly I only relapse 6 months down the line and batch-buy the missing issues anyway. I don't go to comic stores any more (none left near me) so I need to remember for check ebay to see if a new issue is out. At least I'm not picking up any of the DCU Constantine appearances - I saw enough of The Search for Swampy to make me weep. Maybe this was Vertigo's plan - to make the main title look like a gem in comparison. On the plus side it's nice to see you and so many of the old guard still here on the forums despite the comic itself.
  4. I picked up 289-290 this week, but I fear I'm only buying for the sake of completionism. A non-comics reading friend of mine mentioned a couple of weeks ago that he'd picked up one of The Walking Dead graphic novels - he'd never heard of Hellblazer before, but had watched Constanteen. I lent him Original Sins and Dangerous Habits which he read in a weekend and really enjoyed, so I ended up lending him a few more - he's now read them all up to #50, and still seems keen on reading more. I wondered to myself at what point will he start to tire of reading? This got me to thinking - is Hellblazer really so poor nowadays, or is our nostalgia for the earlier issues masking their true quality in comparison? I started rereading a few issues myself. The earlier issues have really dated, but the writing, particular in Delano's era, just seems more polished, and still works well despite its age. John nowadays seems a Millar-esque parody of himself, and while I approve in general of the Epiphany relationship, I just wish they had a little more downtime to explore character outside of plot. Something just isn't hitting the mark right now.
  5. I had to chuck out all my clothes in order to fit my comics in the wardrobe. I've got another 3 boxes in the loft, and I left a box in France and a box in Israel. The 3 comics at the top are the ones on my reading list - sandman endless nights, strange embrace, and (thanks to kejoxen) XIII.
  6. Jackstarr


    Is this the one?
  7. Yeah, I know Alan Moore respected Swampy's past, and I love that the continuity was kept pretty much intact - but the title was really given a good shake-up, both style and content. I suspect Azarello was trying to do a Moore in chopping things up a bit and bringing JC back to his roots, and while his attempt didn't really work, I'm glad that he tried, and would like to see a similar shake-up now. Maybe "care" was the wrong word to use - perhaps "less obsessed with the past" would do the trick? Someone to take off the blinkers and look at things in a new way. Maybe it's because I'm reading John Shirley's Warlord at the moment, but I'm getting a little sick of all the nods and winks to John's past adventures and would like a fresh approach that, while respecting the past, looks to the future and tells different types of tales in a different way. Don't jettison continuity, but give it a good shake-up.
  8. Now I don't know if that just might be what Hellblazer needs - someone without as much care for the character to come in and push the envelope a little bit. Remember what Swamp Thing was like before Alan Moore came along? Although I'm not a fan of Azarello's JC, at least his run was a shot in the arm which freshened things up. I just think we need to put John in a different type of story told in a different way. Big Scary Demons (BSDs) - no thanks. The human (or humanoid) villains are often the best. Intelligent adversaries with whom John can play cat and mouse. Maybe less well-defined villains - John lives in a grey world, and it's interesting to wonder whose side you're actually on. Use of magic - fine if it's not overdone and doesn't involve the summoning of BSDs. Not for use as a deux ex machina. "sprawling mega-arcs" - I don't mind an overall background plotline if it's done subtly, and allowing lots of room for individual short stories without having to pay constant lip service to the overall arc. With Andy Diggle on board, I don't think we need worry about decompression, but I hope he'll give some much-needed downtime for JC in-between the action. Killing people close to JC - yawn. I got bored of this technique back in the days of Ennis. Plus, if we are to give JC a new group of mates, let's see the relationships develop organically rather that being told "this is my mate, oh look he's been killed, what a surprise, oh woe is me." Getting inside JC's head - Yes. Except for the actual details of the con. Continuity - no need to keep referencing or bringing back old characters, but just don't contradict that which has come before.
  9. Now that was a nice change of pace. I'm not one for big scary demons, but it was pretty much a textbook example of what makes Hellblazer, erm... Hellblazer (hence the comments above about being similar to the runs of various other writers). Having said that, and as much as I loved the issue, is it now becoming a case that familiarity breeds contempt? Should we just accept that the character is pretty exhausted after so long and just enjoy the stories for what they are, rather than wanting something that changes the status quo? Mr Diggle aimed and broadly succeeded in giving a shot in the arm to 2000AD, and what with the change in editorial - it'll be interesting to see if a fresh approach will help here.
  10. I'll give XIII a try if it's still available Kejoxen. How much do you want for the postage (don't worry, I'm in the UK)?
  11. However, in "Haunted" (#134) the tree seems to have vanished.
  12. Where's me shades? Actually, it's a nice and attention-grabbing cover, and I can imagine this jumping out at prospective readers in a way that recent covers (nice as they are) haven't been. As for whether it suits Hellblazer - as Lou pointed out it does have a Sean Philips/Glenn Fabry vibe, so despite my initial reservations I'm going to give this one the thumbs up.
  13. I bought it at the time, but have completely forgotten what it was about - that's how strong an impression it made on me. Having said that, I can't seem to forget the Papa Midnite mini, no matter how hard I try...
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